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Showing posts from 2015

The Orin Incident

Account of the Orin Labor Revolt 2306ADPerhaps it had been inevitable, but it seemed none of the security forces were prepared. In recent months the mine shafts in Orin had suffered several structural failures, the result of a drive to make quotas pushing safe mining practices aside.  All told scores of Tracted workers, including women and children, had been trapped or crushed in cave-ins. As accidents accumulated a rising tide of rage built toward a tidal wave of violence. The miners wanted work to halt. They wanted efforts to be made to try and search for survivors. Corporate had scoffed; this was not in the terms of their contracts. To the executives of FerrumSky it was cheaper to bring in new labor than shut down a mine to search for survivors.  They relented only in part, so long as it was off shift and overseen by volunteer Prods, workers could try and find the strength and time to mount a rescue. This half-measure worked at first, but then came the final insult. Work Crews 22A,…

More Design Decisions and More Playtesting

I have to admit I've been neglecting the blog. It isn't that Broken Contract has taken a backseat. Indeed, it's actually been the primary focus of my "free time." Here is a breakdown of what has been going on:
The Rulebook
Over the summer I made the decision to extract all of the background information from the rulebook to keep it concise and useful to those who use rule sets for their own purposes. This gives us the flexibility that as the rules evolve, the background and scenarios can still maintain their relevance. It also means that I can put the compact rule set anywhere I want, making them more accessible to people.

Broken Contract Rule Book PDF 9/3/15
FerrumSky Episode I
This means that all of that background and the scenarios need to go somewhere. For now the new home is in the FerrumSky book which presents all of the background information composed regarding the iron mining and manufacture corporation, FerrumSky. All of the characters written/depicted for …

Playtesting at Realm of the Dragon!

Back in July I sat down with my buddy Nathan and play tested a couple of scenarios at his home. He seemed to really enjoy himself and it had been a while since I had done any playtesting so I was looking at the game with fresh eyes. We talked about how the games went and my mind started cranking on his feedback and feedback I had gotten in May/June from a playtesting group in Spain headed up by @Robh, one of the Kickstarter backers. My brain was processing various changes I wanted to make and I was excited to dive back into the ruleset and start making tweaks. A short while later Nate started pushing for me to run an event at Realm of the Dragon in Wauwatosa, WI. I happily said, "Yes!"

During the weeks before the event I set up an event on MeetUp.com and let my new semi-regular board gaming group know about the event as well. I knew there were a few people coming, but was ecstatic and a little overwhelmed to walk into a packed house of gaming enthusiasm. It was also Warmaho…

Design Discussion: Counters

One thing that most miniature games have in common is the use of counters. I fell in love with miniature gaming because of the immersion that comes with the visual experience. One of the things that has always detracted from that visual experience though is all of the on board clutter that comes from counters littering the field of battle. There have been some more artful approaches like upright blast markers, but cardstock or plastic counters have a hard time preserving the look and feel of my game area.  I am one of those extremists that has an assortment of fully modeled counters for some of my armies just so that I can maintain an attractive play area.

On the opposite end of the spectrum, I love in-game effects like being drugged, set on fire, knocked unconscious, shocked, etc. When you have a lot of in-game effects, you need counters to keep track of them all. In my early playtesting of Broken Contract, the field was littered with ugly counters to keep track of. And they got in …

Making Mine Scenery Part XVI

'It's Time!' is the scenario that comes in the Beta Rules and will also appear in the final rule book. It sets the scene for a break attempt as the miners have been pushed too hard for too long under abysmal work conditions. It is also meant to set up a small introductory skirmish, allowing you to play with up to 8 models on a tiny, 8"x20" play area. Today I'm going to talk about the construction of that play area.


Months ago I constructed this piece from foamcore, Plastruct girders, a piece of textured cardstock, and some pink foam. The light on top of the box that you can barely make out was shaved of a GW Cities of Death piece. I finally glued it in place on an 8"x10" piece of 1/8" masonite board. At the "mouth" of the entrance I glued down a 4" rectangular piece of Plastruct tread plate.


The shape of these board sections is supposed to be more jagged and weird, like they are still currently mining it out, but it still neede…

Models, Components, and Playtesting!

June was a busy month and I feel like I neglected the blog as a result. Those who backed the Kickstarter have been getting updates every week or two but if you are just a lover of hobby blogs then you may feel like you've been missing out.


If you are a fan of the Making Mine Scenery series here on the blog, here's a sneak peak of how the 'It's Time' board is coming along. It isn't finished yet, but it is playable so it got used in today's playtesting.


Several weeks back we got the Breaker Crew Leader, Will Kollis, in from Prodos. He was the first model Prodos did for us and I think he came out fantastic. He blends right in with the existing Tim Barry sculpts too.

He was quickly followed with several other renders.




As you can see, Prodos knocked out some great sculpts. The Prod Gen-Mod will stand 40mm and Overseer Billins and Micha Donelly, standing roughly 5'7", are each 29mm. With what we've learned making Overseer Billins, expect to see more…

Making Mine Scenery Part XV

This week so far I have messed around a little bit more with my batch of Horizon Creation 3D bits. I liked my first attempt at fencing so I made a bunch more to start with.
The two long sections use full ~4.25"x2" hex sheets from Horizon Creations 3D, framed in with a bunch of their rivet bars. I also made a section that looked broken and repaired and a section ideal for my 4-way intersection columns.


This narrow fence support was painted exactly the same way as described in Making Mine Scenery XIV except that I chose not to go as heavy on the rust.


This is a top view of the new 4-way intersection. As you can see I made this one with some caution stripes for more visual interest.


This shot features another Horizon Creation 3D bit: one of the fences from their fence pack. I feel like the caution strip base is too pristine and needs to be dirtied up a bit, but I'll get to that later.


Before I wrap up I want to talk about where I am going with my current board plan. What y…

Making Mine Scenery Part XIV

It's been a while since I've really gotten stuck into doing some work on my mines. Over the last couple of weeks our beloved pitbull, Ian Mackaynine, has had 3 surgeries. He had a growth removed from his leg, but then he tore out one of his sutures running around the house. For surgery number two they tried a less invasive way of sealing it back up with these weird piercings and a web of sutures that needed to be tighten daily at the vet's office. His leg was just too muscular for any of that nonsense and that surgery completely failed to hold his skin together. Yesterday, they did a whole bunch of cutting and stitching to loosen up his skin and get it all back together. His hind leg was described by one friend as "Frankenbutt" and that pretty much nails what it looks like right now. He's a tough little guy so he's doing okay but I've had to be the dog nanny to keep him on the mend. Honestly, I'd be devastated if I couldn't be there for him s…